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Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Family Christmas Dinner - A Lament


I love Christmas Dinner
It's quality family time
Everybody is talking and
the laughter's a good sign

Aunt Mo is a Christian
Probably never sinned
But her brussels sprouts
Still emit toxic wind

Red faced Uncle George
Talks over his other half
His jokes are really crude
But they do make us laugh

Madge is back again
I've forgotten why she's here
but just like last time
She's drunk all the beer

Greedy Brother Bernard
An appetite hard to sate
Twenty roast potatoes
Piled high upon his plate

Sister Ann sings carols
and plays the bassoon
She knows all the words
But they're never in tune

Mum checks my cooking
but I wish Dad was here
but they can't be together
It's the same every year

Niece Mel blows smoke
While sporting a moustache
Hanging from the window
and dropping out her ash

Dear husband Brian
sups too much whisky
Winking at naughty niece
Hoping she is frisky

Son Jack is glued to
his new iphone six
When I had a mobile phone
they were just like bricks

Old Granddad Fred
hasn't moved in ages
wonder if he might be dead?
 Undertaker, check yellow pages

I hate Christmas Dinner
Pretending to be merry
I only just keep sane by

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Happy Christmas to all our readers!


The original photograph for this image taken at Banksy's Dismaland Weston Super Mare September 2015

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

'First Tuesday' 5th January 2pm to 4pm


Dame Edith Sitwell 
 led by
John Green







Dame Edith Sitwell was the daughter of Sir George Sitwell and Lady Ida Sitwell of Renishaw Hall in Derbyshire

 

Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held between 2 pm and 4pm every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry


They are held in the Meeting Room Lower Ground Floor - Next to 'Browser' Cafe 


No booking necessary- just turn up


Friday, 27 November 2015

'First Tuesday' 1st December - Only a Few Days to Go!

2.0 to 4.0 pm


'It's Panto Time'

 

Goldilocks and the Three Bears

with 


John Pratt





Last year an audio version of Aladdin as written and performed by Moorside Writers at Chesterfield Library between 2pm and 4pm on 2nd December 2014.
Watch on Youtube....

 

Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry


They are held in the Meeting Room Lower Ground Floor - Next to 'Browser' Cafe 


No booking necessary- just turn up


Saturday, 21 November 2015

Slurry - Only Death is Immortal

Did This Mystery Happen in North Derbyshire?

 

 

Slurry – Only Death is Immortal, a new paperback by Christopher Fewtrell (Moorside Writers), is set in the town of Millchesterford and the village of Ambover in the Amberlea Valley.

What's the story about? Well, it's not just animals that die unexpectedly when Markus takes up post as a vet in Ambover and gets embroiled in the rotten underbelly of country life. His infatuation with Charlotte, the vegetarian animal activist, gets him ensnared in a web of intrigue as he tries to impress her. But neither of them could have foreseen what dark secrets they would uncover as they stumble into the nasty hidden world beneath the rural idyll.

The interesting question is whether the book is set in North Derbyshire and if some of the extremely bizarre characters are based on real people. What do you think?

Slurry – Only Death is Immortal is available on Amazon.
 The link is at: Slurry






Saturday, 14 November 2015

PROMPTED TO WRITE by Heather Shaw

Internet Writing Sites are numerous and many of them offer Writing Prompts. Do you use them? They are helping me through what some would call Writers' Block and others would see as failure to knuckle down to it.

Some prompts set off an immediate reaction:

'A selfie' found me railing in my journal about the selfish world we live in, the way that so many people seek the company of others because they want an audience and not a conversation. This was definitely therapeutic but perhaps not very creative. It may come in handy if future writing features a grumpy old woman!

'Toe nails painted gold' took me into a world of parties, private swimming pools and celebrations. I had great fun writing about the kind of people I imagine inhabit such a world. The writing was shallow and probably will never be used, but I had fun.

'There was a tiny glass deer on her window sill...' found me inventing a character who had no interest in being told about The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams. 'Anyone,' she said, 'with a ridiculous name like that can hardly be taken seriously.'

She - or was it he? - has possibilities. I've marked the page in my journal as being worth a second look.

'A silver Alice band' took me down a path I usually avoid - reminiscence. I feel, unless it's well disguised, it's self-indulgent. I carried on 'til I reached the end of the page and told myself not to return to it.

Finding it tricky to imagine myself in the world of the circus, 'A hair from a lion's mane' really stumped me. Perhaps I ought to have allowed myself a touch of fantasy or science fiction?



On the practical side, I seem to need pen in hand, rather than fingers on keyboard, when I respond to prompts so I use a notebook. Friends and family know about my penchant for beautiful notebooks and keep my well supplied when Christmas and birthday come round.



I can recommend using prompts. Don't be too hard on yourself by expecting perfect prose or well-structured masterpieces. Have a go and see what happens. Suggestions follow:



A red scarf; The sun shone then; New pens; Falling leaves;

Last year's calendar; Slugs; That was when...; Phrenology.

Heather Shaw 

Thursday, 12 November 2015

'First Tuesday' 1st December

2.0 to 4.0 pm


'It's Panto Time'

 

Goldilocks and the Three Bears

with 


John Pratt





Last year an audio version of Aladdin as written and performed by Moorside Writers at Chesterfield Library between 2pm and 4pm on 2nd December 2014.
Watch on Youtube....

 

Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry


They are held in the Meeting Room Lower Ground Floor - Next to 'Browser' Cafe 


No booking necessary- just turn up


Tuesday, 20 October 2015

'First Tuesday' Meeting 3rd November

'Memories in Creative Writing'

With Stuart Randall



Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry

They are held in the Meeting Room Lower Ground Floor - Next to 'Browser' Cafe 

 

All welcome - no booking necessary- just turn up

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Weird and Wonderful 'First Tuesday' Meeting 1st September 2015

Weird and Wonderful

- a workshop to encourage lateral thinking -






Introduction
I'd like to invite you to do some lateral thinking, to think outside the box. The title of the workshop perhaps should have been Weird or Wonderful because you may well have either or both reactions to the activities I’m going to invite you to do. The idea is to get your mind working in a way it might find unusual, to encourage, perhaps, a different kind of creativity. I hope you’ll find it interesting but don’t worry if it doesn’t work for you. Our creative Muses all work in different ways.


Exercise 1



PROVERBS FOR TODAY by Paul Eluard and Benjamin PĂ©ret

I came, I sat, I departed

A crab by any other name would forget the sea

One good mistress deserves another

When reason is away, smiles will play

Grasp the eye by the monocle

Spare the cradle and spoil the child


Finish these in whatever way you like:

A bird in the hand is worth....................................................................................................

Cleanliness is next to ..........................................................................................................

Don’t try to run before ..........................................................................................................

The proof of the pudding is ..................................................................................................

Money is the root of .............................................................................................................

Every picture tells ................................................................................................................

Truth is stranger than...........................................................................................................

There’s no smoke without ....................................................................................................


Exercise 2










Write for ten minutes about what you think is happening in this picture, or anything the picture brings to mind.








Exercise 3

Look at work by Salvador Dali and M.C. Escher - available online. Choose one picture that
appeals to you.

Something to think about :


What title for the picture springs immediately to mind?
What emotion is conveyed by the picture?
How does the picture make you feel?
Does the image remind you of anything else?
Is any kind of narrative suggested?

Write what comes into your mind.

Heather Shaw

Thursday, 17 September 2015

'First Tuesday' Meeting 6th October

'Smorgasbord of Creative Writing'


 

The October session (2 pm to 4 pm) will feature a variety of exercises provided by Moorside Writers to showcase and improve your creative writing


Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Dorothy Cooke


It is with great sadness that we record that one of the founder members of Moorside Writers, Dorothy Cooke, died on 9th August 2015. A thanksgiving service to celebrate her life was held at St John the Baptist Church in Dronfield on 21st August.

Dorothy  on 1st July, at the launch of her collection of poems, A Dronfield Childhood.

Friday, 28 August 2015


Congratulations are in order, as Moorside's John Pratt has won first prize in the Grindleford Annual Show writing competition with his poem "Summer"!


Summer

I wait on each December day,
impatient for that solstice switch
toward a summer-new campaign.

towards a longer evening light
with bluebells rising overnight
and lazy late June afternoons.

And yet the season’s longest day
is somehow just a surreal play,
an orchid dream that fades away:

mere prelude to the fullest bloom
when summer steps out from the wings
carelessly beyond her noon,

to stroll along blackberry lanes,
by meadows flocked with buttercup;
hedges bound with hip and sloe;

footpaths freshly overgrown,
the land full-frocked, and wholly ripe,
dew-laden dawns and scented nights
– this is summer’s sweeping flight.

You may recall Moorside's Stuart Randall won first prize last year!

Thursday, 6 August 2015

'First Tuesday' Meeting 1st September

'Weird and Wonderful'

 

Heather Shaw 


Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry

Saturday, 25 July 2015

You couldn't make it up! Part Three

In November 2014 I challenged you to work out what the four words I had made up (see below) meant. Literally hundreds of people have had a go but no one has succeeded in winning the £1000 prize. (n.b. I am a creative writer)







'digiphonic'  appears in the novel 'Muddled Daze' in the sentence:
"And to think it is all because of one of those newfangled digiphonic radios or whatever they call them."

'digiphonic'  is technology that allows a radio to automatically update the time.




'snazzled' appears in the novel 'Slurry - Only Death is Immortal' in the sentence:
"I'd been spot on - she was already snazzled."

 'snazzled' joins the many hundred slang terms for being drunk in the English language.


  'plodges' appears in the, as yet unfinished, novel 'Terminal One' in the sentence:
"He plodges down in the armchair as if misjudging its height."

'to plodge' is to sit down clumsily. 



And 'poly-ath' appears in
'The Young Thrusters -An Affectionate History of an Extraordinary Football Team'
in the sentence:

"Paul is a football man with no particular connection to rugby so it is probable that, if they exist, they are proper footballers rather than the 'poly-aths' who turned out in the past."

  'poly-ath' is someone talented in several sports.
 


Chris Fewtrell

Friday, 3 July 2015

A Dronfield Childhood by Dorothy Cooke

The hottest day of the year so far, 1st July, saw the launch of Dorothy Cooke's collection of poems, A Dronfield Childhood. It was held at the Tea Rooms, Cliffe Park, Callywhite Lane, Dronfield, accompanied by tea and luxurious cake.

 Enjoying tea and cake

 Dorothy reads some of the 43 poems


 A Dronfield Childhood on display

If you would like a copy of A Dronfield Childhood ring Dorothy on 01246 414642

£5 plus £1 postage

Monday, 29 June 2015

'First Tuesday' Meeting 7th July

The July meeting will be an opportunity for those attending to read some of their poetry or prose so bring something suitable. Also it will be an opportunity to show case anything you wish to promote or sell in the literary field.



Chesterfield Library


'First  Tuesday' Meetings are held every month except August and are suitable for anyone  who is interested in discussing and undertaking practical exercises in creative writing - prose or poetry


They are held in the Meeting Room Lower Ground Floor - Next to 'Browser' Cafe